Mother-Daughter team brings authentic Italian cuisine to Chandler 6

Joanne’s Catering offers 
homemade meals, desserts

Joanne’s Catering is a local Chandler catering business that specializes in Southern Italian food. Joanne Spataro runs Joanne’s Catering with her daughter, Rose Spataro-Petersen.

The inspiration

Joanne was born in Calabria in southern Italy, where she developed a love for Italian food at an early age. She moved to the United States in her teens and she founded her catering business in New Jersey in the 1980s.

When Joanne moved to Arizona in 1992, she continued her catering business on a part-time basis. After retiring from house cleaning last year, Joanne decided that she would put her 30 years of catering experience to good use and pursue her love for catering with her daughter, Rose.

Rose serves as the manager of Joanne’s Catering. She communicates with the customers, manages the orders and runs all the company’s social media platforms.

The mother-daughter team decided to post their garlic knots to the local “Ocotillo Friends” Facebook page to see if anyone would be interested in ordering them. The garlic knots were a hit and as the demand for them grew, customers began to request that Joanne’s Catering offer more meal options on a weekly basis.

They took their customer’s advice and put together a unique menu of authentic Italian food options.

“It started out with garlic knots and now it has just grown and we are just so appreciative of everybody who orders from us,” says Rose.

Weekly meal service

Every Thursday, a weekly menu is posted using the website After the menu is posted, customers can select their meals.

A few of their popular dishes include Chicken Parmigiana, Lasagna, Pasta with Meatballs and a chicken dish created by Joanne called Chicken Monterey. One of their most requested desserts is a cannoli cake.

They have succeeded at making even the less favorable food 
dishes tasty.

“We have customers say, ‘I don’t like broccoli, but I love yours, what do you put in it?’ I tell them that we prepare it with love,” Rose says.

Joanne’s Catering aims to provide their customers with affordable meals. Their large meal tray ranges between $35 and $40 and feeds four to six people. Half orders are also available.

The heart of the business

Family is a very important aspect of Joanne’s Catering.

“My mother and I are very close, we’ve always been close; we are like best friends,” Rose says.

Their passion for family is also reflected in their relationship with their customers.

“We actually view our customers as part of our family, we have built caring, long-lasting friendships with these people,” Rose adds.

They not only care for their customers, but also Chandler and the community they serve.

“We love Chandler, we feel that it is the best community and the best city to live in, not only for the schools, but for the people,” Rose says. “We are a close knit group and a loving neighborhood that truly cares for one another.”

They donate between one and five meals a week to families in the community that are in need, whether it is “financially, spiritually or emotionally,” Rose says. They also donate one free meal to a customer that has ordered a meal that week.

Catering and large orders

In addition to weekly meals, Joanne’s Catering also caters events such as wedding, birthdays and other large events for 300+ people. The team can work with any budget to create a beautiful and memorable occasion.

Joanne’s Catering can also host private dinner parties where they cook a meal and serve you in your home, and cooking classes where you can learn how to cook your own Italian meal.

Joanne’s Catering is a special culinary gem in Chandler. They not only have a love for the food they cook, but also for the people they serve.

To learn more about Joanne’s Catering, call 480-338-6184 or visit their public Facebook group page “Joanne’s Catering”.